Pianist strikes a note for truth

January 21, 2009

In News

Pianist speaks out

01.19.2009 | The London Free Press

Renowned Canadian pianist Anton Kuerti spoke out yesterday after a concert in London about the Gaza conflict, saying a ceasefire will not end the suffering of Palestinians.

“At least the slaughter has stopped — for the moment,” he said yesterday after performing at Wolf Performance Hall in the central library.

Last Thursday in Toronto, Kuerti joined other prominent Jewish-Canadians in denouncing Israel’s invasion. He said Israel’s actions made him “ashamed to be a Jew.”

A ceasefire took hold yesterday after three weeks of air strikes and a ground invasion that left at least 1,250 Palestinians dead. Israel launched the attack in retaliation for rocket attacks by Hamas, but Kuerti said the Israelis treated Palestinians brutally.

“They made the whole place into a big concentration camp. Nobody could get out. It was blockaded on all sides and deprived of food, fuel and medicine.”

Kuerti has spoken out on political issues before and ran for the federal NDP in 1988. He said he is not optimistic U.S. support for Israel will be tempered under Barack Obama, noting key members of his administration back Israel.